Police brutality in the Black community is as old as law enforcement itself.
Former federal prosecutor Paul Butler speaks in depth on the issue in his new book, “Chokehold: Policing Black Men.”
“Even as a prosecutor I was a still a Black man,” said Butler during an interview on MSNBC with Rev. Al Sharpton. “I was even arrested for a crime I didn’t commit…I was acquitted in less than five minutes.”
In his book, Butler points out that Black people have never been in a situation of good faith in America with police.
“When we say that the system is targeting Black men, that’s true,” Butler told Sharpton. Butler worked as a prosecutor at the Department of Justice and is now a professor at Georgetown Law School in Washington, D.C. Butler also had a few recommendations for decreasing incidents of police brutality.
“Half of cops should be women,” Butler suggested. “Women cops are much less likely to shoot people.”
Butler continued: “Cops should have college degrees. Cops with college degrees are much less likely to shoot unarmed people.”
Butler takes a “no-holds-barred” approach to writing about police brutality.
In his book, Butler also points out that White men commit the majority of violent crime in the United States and that a White woman is ten times more likely to be raped by a White male acquaintance than becoming a victim of a violent crime perpetrated by a Black man.
Butler also speaks forcefully on the unwarranted fear Whites have of Blacks, and how that perception ends up impacting American policing.
Feature photo: Paul Butler (left), Chokehold: Policing Black Men (right).
Lauren Victoria Burke, Contributor
Lauren Victoria Burke is an independent journalist who analyses politics and justice reform. She created Crewof42.com, a blog that covers the work of African American members of Congress, in 2009. Ms. Burke has also been a staffer for the Senate Democratic Policy Committee and Director of Communications for Rep. Andre Carson (D-IN). She has had a very diverse career in politics and media and appears weekly on NewsOneNow with Roland Martin. She has also appeared on Hardball with Chris Matthews, Politics Nation with Al Sharpton and Up with Steve Kornacki on MSNBC. She is also a contributing writer for NBCNews.com and TheRoot.com
Ms. Burke has also authored three books of photography including two on President Obama’s 2008 campaign for the presidency and one with Marvel Comics creator Stan Lee.
Ms. Burke was born in the Bronx, New York and grew up on Long Island. She holds a B.A. in History from The American University.